Singapore’s resident employment grew at slower pace in Q2

Resident employment for citizens and permanent residents continued to expand, though at a slow pace due to stricter pandemic measures from May 16.
By: | August 2, 2021

The slower resident employment growth in the second quarter was due to declines in domestic sectors which had the most direct impact from tighter safe management measures, such as food & beverages services and retail trade, according to the Labour Market Advance Release for the second quarter by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM). 

On the other hand, sectors such as information & communications and professional services, as well as in community, social & personal services continued to see resident employment grow steadily. 

While resident employment continued to grow, total employment in the second quarter fell due to a steep decline in employment of foreign workers as departing workers were not replaced due to border restrictions imposed for public health reasons. 

Unemployment rates continued to decline. Month-on-month, the overall unemployment rate fell from 2.8% to 2.7% in June, while that of residents from 3.8% to 3.7%. Citizen unemployment rate fell from 4.0% in May to 3.8% in June. 

Since peaking in September 2020, unemployment rates had been falling steadily, though they remained high compared to those seen in pre-pandemic times. 

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Retrenchments increased to 2,500 from the previous quarter’s 2,270. Companies cited re-organisation/restructuring, or business downturn as common reasons for the layoffs, said MOM. 

MOM said the Phase 2 (Heightened Alert) from May 16 to June 13 had some impact on the labour market, in particular on resident employment within domestically-oriented sectors most directly affected by the measures.